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Columbia Missourian

Missouri panel to consider bill for filling vacancies

By The Associated Press
January 15, 2013 | 9:08 a.m. CST

JEFFERSON CITY — A Missouri House committee plans to consider legislation calling for elections to fill vacancies in statewide elected offices.

The proposal would allow the governor to appoint an acting officeholder until an election could be held. The appointee would be barred from running immediately for the office.

A hearing on the bill was scheduled Tuesday in the House Elections Committee.

Under current law, midterm vacancies for attorney general, secretary of state, treasurer, auditor and the U.S. Senate can be filled by gubernatorial appointment.

But opinions differ on how to fill a vacancy in the lieutenant governor's office.

Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder is seeking the Republican nomination to replace U.S. Rep. Jo Ann Emerson, who is leaving Congress next month. Kinder just started his third term.